Pony Wars 2: A Look At Team Vengeance’s Camaro Build

The competition is heating up between our Pony Wars 2 contestants. Ford NXT, Arrington Motorsports, and Vengeance Racing are all on the warpath to become the next champion with $10,000 to spend based on Summit Racing pricing. Surprisingly the baseline numbers on all three cars are pretty close, which will make for a tight race. The question is, will the numbers be this close after the vehicles are heavily modified?

It’s no surprise that it will take a ton of horsepower along with dependability to be crowned the Pony Wars 2 champion. In this article, we are going to take a look at Vengeance Racing Camaro build to see exactly what parts were used on the 2019 Camaro for maximum performance and reliability.

Ron Mowen, the Owner of Vengence Racing, is known for building some of the baddest GM-powered machines in the world — Don’t believe us, click here. When it came time to order parts for the team’s Camaro, they knew what needed to be replaced on the car to go fast and do so reliably. With $10,000 at their disposal, the first move for the guys at Vengeance was to figure out their plan of attack and replace all of the components that would either break or slow them down.

Team Vengeance wasted no time in getting the 6.2-Liter out of the Camaro and torn down.

The first order of business was the Camaro’s direct-injected 6.2-liter engine. Vengeance quickly removed the power plant in order to fill it up with a host of go-fast goodies. Since the engine will be force fed with some serious amounts of air, the components chosen will need to be able to hold up to the additional cylinder pressure, heat, and the additional power generated by the ProCharger.

The first thing addressed by Vengence Racing was the engine’s rotating assembly. Ron and crew know from experience that the factory pistons would not take the brute force associated with forced induction. In fact, Ron says the factory LT1 pistons will start to crack at 650 wheel-horsepower. With plans to make well over 650 horsepower, A call to Mahle was made for s custom set of forged pistons to alleviate this problem. The Mahle engineers came back with a beautiful set of custom forged pistons that would drop in the stock bore engine. With this new design, the rotating assembly would not need to be rebalanced, saving money and time for the team. In addition to the pistons, Vengeance used Total Seal rings and attached the pistons to a set of beefy Molnar Technologies connecting rods. Chevrolet Performance rod bearings were used to replace the used OEM units.

Next up was the cam selection for the boosted beast. Vengeance went with a COMP Cams camshaft that is specifically designed for the Gen V platform. It not only increases the lift and duration over the factory unit, but it also aids in fuel delivery. The fuel pump lobe on the camshaft is engineered by COMP Cams to be 32-percent larger than the factory camshaft. This will drive the fuel pump to a higher flow rate giving the Camaro better fuel volume.

After getting the rotating assembly and COMP Cams camshaft secured in the stock 6.2-Liter block, the Vengeance team put its focus on the cylinder heads. A call to Late Model Engines (LME) was made to get the ball rolling on the heads. The team decided to go with a set of OEM LT1 heads that are ported by LME.

LME starts by deburring all of the sharp edges on the cylinder heads. They then check for valve guide clearance and make adjustments for the particular application. The heads are then set up in the CNC machine to port the intake exhaust and chambers. After the CNC process, LME then does a competition valve job on the units before hand-blending into ports. The combustion chambers are then measured and adjusted for application if needed. After careful cleaning of cylinder heads, the intake valves are back cut with the optimal angle for application. The heads are then assembled while checking spring pressure for the cam that will be utilized.

The LME Billet LT1 VVT delete front cover is set up for a wet sump oiling system and is a work of art.

For the valvetrain, Team Vengeance decided to rid the Camaro’s Displacement On Demand (DOD) components. To do this, the guys used an LME Billet LT1 VVT delete front cover set up for a wet sump oiling system in conjunction with a set of LME DOD delete plugs. This billet front cover allows you to delete of the factory cam phaser which is known to fluctuate at high RPM and high boost levels improving performance and reliability. Chevrolet Performance LS7 hydraulic lifters were also used with a set of Trickflow 3/8 7.800-inch hardened pushrods, Cloyes “Z” Single Roller Timing Chain, Comp Cams Lash Caps, and a Summit Racing LS Retrofit Trunnion kit for the stock rockers.

When it was time to secure the LME heads on the engine, a set of ARP Head studs for the Gen V application were used. GM Performance LT4 head gaskets were also employed to mate the heads to the block and make sure they seal under boost.

The next step was to address the Direct Injection (DI) fuel system. While the 2019 Camaro has a new design for the fuel system, Ron wanted to make sure the car received plenty of fuel to make the power needed to win. A GM LT4 high-pressure fuel pump replaced the factory unit along with a set of GM LT4 DI fuel injectors, GM LT4 fuel pump feed pipe, and a GM fuel pump module. Since all of the parts are designed for the LT4, they simply plug into the Camaro. The factory valley cover was also swapped out with a Vengeance Racing LT1 valley cover which was needed for the LT4 fuel pump fitment.

2019 Camaro SS $10,000 Parts List

Sponsored Parts

  • BMR Driveshaft Loop
  • K&N Air Filter for Supercharger
  • Weld Wheels S71 Front and Rear Wheels With Beadlocks
  • Toyo Tires TQ Drag Radials 315/35/17 Drag Radial Drag Pack Rear
  • Toyo Tires  Proxes A40 215/45/18 Drag Pack Front
  • Toyo Tires Autocross R888R 285/30/20 x4
  • ProCharger Supercharger Camaro Stage II Kit D-1X

Parts Total:  $9,637.88

Other notable engine parts included a Scoggin Dickey Parts Center (SPDC) 180-degree thermostat for Gen V LT which will keep the Camaro at a cooler running temperature while racing. A set of Vengeance Racing high-temperature protective heat sleeves were used on the plug wires to ensure nothing melts as things heat up. Finally, a Vengeance Racing sixth-gen Camaro catch can assembly was installed to catch the oil coming out of the breathers and keep in from being recirculated in the engine.

Vengeance used BMR Suspension components to stiffen the car up in hopes to have an edge at the dragstrip and the autocross.

With their budget dwindling, Vengeance decided it was time to put their focus on the suspension of the sixth-gen Camaro. The team turned to the professionals at BMR Suspension to address some of the issues of getting the car through the twisties quicker. The first order of business was to get a lower center of gravity, so a set of BMR lowering springs were installed. The sway bars were also upgraded with a stiffer set of BMR units to keep the car level in the corners. A set of BMR non-adjustable control arms, trailing arms, and upper trailing arms were used to keep the suspension flex free and tight on the autocross course. The BMR chassis braces were also employed to make sure the hefty body of the Camaro didn’t have any twist. Finally, A set of BMR’s double adjustable toe rods were also installed and will allow the car to launch harder, reducing wheel hop, and adding cornering consistency to the 2019 Camaro.

After the engine was back in the SS, it was time to button it up and install the ProCharger system. ProCharger supplied their 2016+ Camaro Stage II Kit D-1X supercharger system which is capable of making 1,000-plus horsepower and simply bolts on the 2016-19 Camaro SS. This system includes the D-1X head unit with a black finish, ProCharger fabricated intake manifold with cover, 10-rib drive system, ATI balancer, race intercooler, race blowoff valve, and all brackets and hardware. This unit is also rated up to 1,000 horsepower which should have the Camaro moving nicely if the Vengence team plays their cards right.

The ProCharger D-1X system is highly efficient and as a result, produces cooler charger air temperatures while reducing parasitic engine load. The D-1X head units feature the sturdy, self-contained gearcase that is standard on most ProCharger models, but with an aerodynamic compressor design which creates cooler air temperatures and more horsepower at the same boost level than the P-1SC-1 and D-1SC. A K&N Air Filter was used in conjunction with the supercharger to make sure and keep the airflow clean and restriction free.

With all of this added power, there was no way the Vengeance Camaro SS would ever hook up on the factory tires and wheels. Weld Wheels provided a set of 17X10 S71 beadlock rear wheels and 18×6 fronts. A massive set of 315/35/17 Toyo Tires TQ drag radials were mounted with high hopes that the car would be able to hook up on the dragstrip with a pair of 215/45/18 Toyo Proxes A40 tires up front. A set of Toyo R888R 285/30/20 will be used on all for corners for the autocross and braking portions of our competition.

After everything was installed in the Camaro and buttoned up, it was time to hit the rollers and to start tuning and see what the Camaro was capable of with the new setup. Previously the Camaro hit a baseline of 432 horsepower, 447 lb-ft of torque with the help of some additional bolt-on modifications on the chassis dyno. With a complete rebuild, the Team Vengeance Camaro should make outstanding power on the Dynojet dyno. As we saw last episode, during preliminary testing on the Horsepower Wars dyno, the Camaro hit 867.7 hp and 727.6 lb-ft of torque using VP Racing 95-octane C9 fuel. We’ll have to wait until next episode to see if the Camaro has more left in it, when it goes head to head on the same dyno with the other two cars.

We are just days away from finding out if Team Vengeance and their ProCharged Camaro SS can take home the victory. All three cars are locked and loaded for battle but who will come out on top in Pony Wars 2 as the champion? We will have to wait and see.

The 2019 season of Pony Wars is made possible by some of the leading companies in our industry, including Summit RacingCOMP CamsTCIK&N Filters, Toyo Tires, MAHLE MotorsportsDyna-BattWeld RacingCorsa PerformanceFragolaHolleyDiabloSport, NOSE3 Spark PlugsTotal SealMickey ThompsonMoser EngineeringBMR SuspensionMiller ElectricAerospace ComponentsVictor ReinzMorosoUS GearHawk PerformanceLucas OilPRW IndustriesWeld RacingVP RacingNOSProCharger, and ARP. Stay tuned, it’s going to be a wild ride!

About the author

Brian Havins

A gearhead for life, Brian is obsessed with all things fast. Banging gears, turning wrenches, and praying while spraying are just a few of his favorite things.
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